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Date: September the 8th 1994
Fax: 00 244 332164
Number of pages: 3 (including this)
TO: António P. M. C. Van-Dunem
Juridical Advisor of the Cabinet of
the President of the Democratic Republic of Angola
Luanda, Democratic Republic of Angola
Dear Mr. António Van-Dunem,
1. I hereby confirm my fax of August the 2nd 1994.
2. Unfortunately after our meeting in Lisbon I didn’t receive any other news from you.
3. In effect, nor the delay of approximately two weeks, that you, at the end of our meeting, mentioned to me to be that foreseeable for me to receive any news, has been observed nor did I received any answer to my request for a fax of August the 2nd 1994.
4. On the other hand, I have just received, through friendly hands, a piece of the Jornal de Angola of today where it can be read a communication from the Minister for the Domestic Affair of the Democratic Republic of Angola on the case that, professionally, we have been treating.
5. Still through the information of Friends I was able to know that the same communication was also broadcasted, yesterday, in Angola, to all the country, by TV, on the 8h30 pm news and through the Rádio Nacional on the 11h pm news.
6. After examining the communication I can objectively verify that it is a text where malicious and unjustified insinuations are made against my constituent and where the truth of the facts is not respected.
7. Apart from this it is objectively evident that the composition and broadcasting of the communication are political acts.
8. Meaning that your constituent, the Government of Angola, by unilateral act of its exclusive (and surprising) initiative, has placed in the (merely) political plan, a matter of exclusively juridical nature what professionally, as lawyers, we were treating, among us, in representation of our patrons.
9. But the concatenation of these two realities: singular silence on your side (not complying with the courtesy duties usually followed among lawyers through out the world) and the displacement of the case from the juridical sphere into the political one lead into some reflection.
10.Therefore, my first reflection, I would say me first concern, is with freedom, safety and both your professional independence and that of Carlos Feijó.
11.As a matter of fact we can not forget that Angola is, unfortunately, a Country in war; a country that suffers, for long years now, from a bloody fratricidal war.
12.And that it is also a country with a long tradition of strong and authoritarian Governments.
13.Here lies my concern, which I believe to be justified, with the lack of freedom or with the violent control (violent or subtle) which may be exercised over you enabling you to freely exercise your profession, including to communicate with me.
14.If this is the terrible reality through which my Colleague is passing through (what I am obviously going to try to verify) I shall have no doubts to denounce in the due places and moments inclusively with the necessary description, if that’s the case.
15.Actually, this attitude is, as you know, a sacred duty to all lawyer worthy of this name, a duty which I shall not avoid.
16.Therefore, whatever the situation in which you and Carlos Feijó may be found within the security, freedom and independence plan to the exercise of your profession, it is up to me to say something about the other matter meaning the case transfer (which he have been treating) from the juridical sphere into the (merely) political one.
17.the transfer of the case from the juridical plan into the political one (and in the conditions this transfer has been made) is the most evident proof that, such it had been pointed out to you and to Carlos Feijó, the presumable material and moral authors of the horrendous crimes practiced can only be high members of the so called today nomenclature of the political and military power of Angola.
18. In fact if it isn’t so why not leave the criminal proceeding proceed with its regular terms without counterfeit interferences?
19. And why not hear the witnesses already pointed out to you and Carlos Feijó by my constituent?
20.Besides if it wasn’t for political reasons how could it be explained this interference of the Executive (political) in the Judicial (which is desired to be independent) of the Democratic Republic of Angola?
21.It is an interference that nothing can justify unless the conscience, on the side of the political elements of the Executive, of their criminal responsibility!!!!
22. Or, in other words, who is afraid of who, in the Army from Angola?
23. Why is there so much haste, why so much concern, from the Government of Angola, in making statements anticipated to any action from my constituent?
24.And, on the other hand, why this violation, on your constituent side, of the gentlemen agreement which we had established saying that our patrons would not proceed to any non-friendly action while our conversations hadn’t come to an end?
25.In view of all this, it is shown that I understand that the present matter, which is typically juridical and which I obstinately have looked forward to treat in its own headquarters – the juridical world – has escaped, by exclusive responsibility of the Government of Angola, into the political plan.
26. But being as it is, it is also my understanding that my mission has ended here.
27. In effect I don’t intend to treat this matter nor politically nor in terms of domestic policy nor even in terms of international politics; other will do it and with more competence then I would be able of.
28. Therefore I am going to give, at the present date, to my constituent and to the economic group where this one is inserted, all the material that our offices patiently and scrupulously have gathered to this dossier.
29. And will stop treating this case.
30. However, I will not do it without, for a question of Justice, to strongly reject as being biased, malicious and untrue the mentioned communication yesterday broadcasted and published today.
31. And without stressing once again my concern with both your freedom and safety and that of Carlos Feijó.
32. Therefore, it is the purpose of this message to communicate (or try to communicate) to you all these facts and sending to your colleague my very best regards, which I hope it will arrive into the knowledge of my dear Colleague.
With my very best regards,
ASSIS DE ALMEIDA ADVOGADOS SCP
José A. Assis de Almeida